Sir Jonathan Pryce says Prince Philip was “far from being racist”.
The 75-year-old actor will play the late Duke of Edinburgh in the fifth and sixth seasons of Netflix’s hit drama ‘The Crown’ and claimed Philip’s famous gaffes were down to him being a ‘product’ of his time.
Jonathan told the Daily Telegraph newspaper: “The first thing young people say about him is that he was racist. Far from it. He was a product of a time when there was occasional racism but I don’t don’t think he was racist at all.
“He was very intelligent, curious and innovative in his time. He toured, lectured, talked, encouraged. Although he felt bound by his membership in the monarchy, he did what he could. “
Jonathan explained how talking to carriage drivers – a hobby the late royal took up for fun later in life – gave him valuable insight into Philip.
The ‘Pirates of the Caribbean’ star said: “I had seen him as not very outgoing, quite aloof, but when I started talking to people who knew him – the fraternity of carriage drivers and the special advisers from ‘The Crown’ on protocol who were very close to him – it was clear he was a great person to spend time with, very funny, very full of life No one I spoke to had a bad word to say.
Jonathan explained that portraying Philip – who died aged 99 in 2021 – was his toughest “acting challenge”.
He said: “That was my biggest acting challenge – and continues to be.
“After he died it became even more intimidating. You watched the documentaries that honored him and his grandchildren and you saw how he was loved by his children and his grandchildren and all of a sudden he There was this side of him that the public didn’t know about. He was a big surprise. I wish I had known more about him over the years.